Twice-Baked Honey Nut Acorn Squash

Even though I had to get up early for my flight back home on Saturday, I had enough energy to cook my family and myself a nice meal. I have been so devoted to studying for finals that I hadn't cooked anything elaborate in weeks! I was having cooking withdrawal!

I wrote down what I wanted to prepare before going shopping once we got back to my hometown, but of course I  had to get some seasonal ingredients! We got an acorn squash, which I hadn't prepared in a really long time. My dad likes to roast squash them whip them with spices, so I used that premise to make roasted acorn squash. After extracting the seeds of the halved squash, I put honey, butter, pecans, and pumpkin pie spice into the center and roasted the halves at high heat to caramelize and cook the squash and also help the nuts become coated with sticky honey and butter. I mashed the squash and the filling in the shells, then re-baked the mixture, kind of like a twice-baked potato. It smelled so much like pumpkin pie but was much easier and a lot healthier than pie because there was no crust or excess sugar (however is still a great treat). I can't wait to make more of this squash!

 This would be the perfect holiday side dish because not only does it make a unique presentation, but all the roasting spices smell really good!

Don't forget to save the seeds to roast alongside the squash! Just coat with a little olive oil and spices of your choice and roast them at 450 degrees F until they are toasted and browned.

Twice-Baked Honey Nut Acorn Squash
Printable Recipe

1 medium acorn squash, cut from the stem to the bottom, seeds scraped out
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp honey
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Place the squash cut-side up inside a baking dish such as a 13"x9" glass cake pan.
3. Divide the butter, honey, pecans, and spices evenly between the squash halves, placing all ingredients in the hollowed-out space.
4. Bake for 50 min-1 hr, our until a fork easily pierces the flesh of the squash. Remove the squash and drop the temperature to 350 degrees F.
5. Use a fork to mash the squash and seasonings together inside the squash shell. Be careful not to piece the squash shell. Use an oven mitt on your second hand to help hold the squash steady. Smooth the top of the mashed squash-seasoning mixture and place back in the oven and bake until lightly browned and caramelized, about 20-30 minutes. Serve immediately, scooping the mashed squash out of the squash shells to serve.

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